An interesting alternative approach to improving our lives is to think of small changes to make that do not require much time and effort but which imbue us with energy and will for making bigger changes. I call this using the "power of small changes." The following are some examples:
An acquaintance of mine had a really cluttered desk. He could not find the time to organize and file the clutter, nor could he think of anyone with the expertise to do it well.
One evening he got the idea that instead of having all those papers, magazines, journals and books lying on his desk, he could put them in boxes. In a few minutes he was able to do this. He wrote notes on the boxes to quickly let him know what each contained. He dusted the desk and arranged his writing accessories neatly. When he sat down at this desk, he said he was amazed at how positive he felt. With the clutter, he felt inundated by things to be done. Now he felt more in control. It shocked him that for years he had endured this disorder, and all the negative emotions it spawned, when it was so easy to replace it with calm and vibrancy.
A colleague wanted to start an exercise program but kept putting it off. She could never find the time to get to a gym and was too weary from her other duties to do much exercise. She was lamenting to a friend that she feared her health was being impaired because of her lack of exercise. He asked her to start running on the spot there and then. She did it, and in three minutes she got more exercise than she had done in weeks. She made running on the spot her exercise program. She was able to get vigorous exercise in a few minutes a day, and there was no time wasted travelling to and from a gym, readying to get to the gym, etc.
In an office where several of us worked, there was old furniture stacked in a corner. One day it dawned on us that this pile was an eyesore, an utterly drab intrusion from the past. It contradicted the spirit of progress and possibilities we promoted in our work. We quickly found a place in the backyard for it, and in less than two hours the pile that had diminished our lives for over a year was gone.
Look around you and think of small changes to make that can help you feel much better, that life is more of something you create than just a clutter. Removing that broken clock that has been sitting on the wall for years, rearranging items in your bathroom or in your closet, packing away things strewn around your apartment, reorganizing the utensils in your kitchen, clearing the dinner table of a pile of papers stored on it for years, starting an exercise program like the one mentioned above... can often be done very quickly. But they have powerful effects, create a sense of order, make us feel more positive about life and give us more zest for getting things done.
I have constantly been pleasantly surprised by how these small changes make us feel sharply better and increase efficiency. Do not underestimate the "power of small changes" for creating the vibrancy, energy and will to help us attain bigger changes that make us more dynamic and successful.